Barns in Evanston/Chicago area?

Hey everyone!

I’m moving to Northwestern in the fall for school and am looking to find a good barn in the Evanston area to keep up my riding. I will have access to a car while I’m there so I am willing to drive out a bit if need be (preferably not more than 45 mins out of Evanston)

I’d like to find an eventing barn since I train mainly in dressage and jumper. I’m not really interested in training hunter at all but if there are any hunter/jumper barns in the area with a decent dressage coach I’m open to that.

The only barn I know of in the area is hunter/jumper barn Freedom Woods, if anyone has any feedback on how that barn is that would be greatly appreciated!

You might consider driving a bit, and board at Fields and Fences in Gurnee…NU Eq team trains there. Sara Timmis is a BHS certified instructor and has trained Eventers in the past.

From the Eq team website:
The Northwestern University Equestrian Team (NUET) is a co-ed club sports team that competes in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA), Zone 7, Region 4. Riders of all skill levels are welcome to join the team; no prior experience is necessary. The team’s skill level varies widely, with riders competing at all levels, from Walk-Trot to Open. Team members ride at least once a week in group lessons at Fields and Fences, in Gurnee, IL, under the instruction of Sara Timmis.

Hi Inese

The IHSA shows are pretty much only hunter shows and the Northwestern equestrian team trains hunter so that they compete at these shows. I’m really not too keen on training at a hunter barn or competing in hunter shows, I’m looking for an eventing barn or dressage barn but thanks for your input!

These places will be closest to Evanston, but still not accessible unless you are driving.

http://www.glengroveequine.com/index.php

http://freedomwoods.net/#freedom-woods-about

Cannot vouch for either one, but otherwise you will need to go farther out in the NW 'burbs.

Longer drives, but here you go ~

Silverwood Farm, Camp Lake WI (hosts USEA rec HTs)
Fireside Farm, next door to Silverwood, dressage focus
Kenny and Erin Dierks, Marengo http://www.erinandkennydierks.com/index.htm
Brigitte Kettell, Naperville http://baythornefarm.com/training/brigitte-kettell/
Cathy Jones Forsberg, Topline Equestrian, Hampshire - she is ICP certified

and this additional info
http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?374255-Eventing-barns-in-Northern-IL-southeastern-WI

Hi Andrea! Welcome to Evanston/Chicago! You’re in luck – you’re about 45 min. away from 2 great barns. Freedom Woods is close but it wasn’t for me. It felt “factory farm-ish” to me. I ride at Millgate with Brenda Yost. I love her barn. It’s not fancy, it’s small, the people are wonderful - it feels like family. Everyone takes their riding seriously but it isn’t stuffy. I love it there. We have 2 boarders that come up from Evanston. Another good eventing trainer is Chris Neff - she teaches out of Don Bar. Don Bar is a bigger, commercial barn, has the heated viewing room, etc… The cool part about both of these barns is that they’re involved in fox hunting if you’d be interested in that. Both barns also have clinicians come in and go to the same shows. Google them and give Brenda and Chris a call. PM if you can’t find their contact info online and I’ll send it to you. I think it’s going to be much easier for you to head north on 94 to a barn than to go west through all the burbs to the farms that way. Congrats on Northwestern!!! Bring your warmest gear for winter. :slight_smile:

ps. I just saw that you’re also interested in dressage barns – there’s Tempel Farms in the same vicinity – big dressage barn – big time clinicians and very very studious dressage riders. Silverwood is an hour and 20 min from you. There’s also Sunflower Farms in Bristol, WI, but it’s also a longer drive - maybe an hour from Evanston.